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Literature

Greek Author Stephania Roulaki Talks to TNH on Her Latest Books

April 23, 2022

Greek author Stephania Roulaki spoke with The National Herald about her writing career and her latest work. Her historical novel, Ego tha Ziso ( I Will Live), set during World War II, is available in Greek online from Pigi Publications.

The book, based on real events, asks difficult questions about living in wartime and surviving the devastation. It is a fictional retelling of the harrowing true story of Dina Pronicheva, one of the few people who survived the Nazi atrocities and the 1941 Babyn Yar Massacre in Kyiv, Ukraine.

TNH: Tell us a bit about your background, where did you grow up and study?

Stephania Roulaki: I grew up in Athens, and now I live in Moschato, a place near Piraeus actually. I studied Advertising at Eurocenter College, Management at Deree, Mental Health Consultancy and Group Therapy at Athens Synthesis Centre.

I worked for several multinational companies and in my 40’s I decided to change career because I wanted to focus on a more humanistic job. I always had the need to write, basically to express my feelings. When I learned how to express them, through personal therapy, I felt confident enough to write in order to pass messages to readers through my stories. I find it a magical procedure! It gives me the opportunity to live other people’s lives through the heroes of my stories and to touch other people’s lives as well!

Stephania Roulaki. Photo: Courtesy of Stephania Roulaki

TNH: What inspires you the most in your writing career?

SR: I am inspired by true stories at the moment. My first book – that is already published – is a true survival story from the Second World War. A children’s book that is going to be published in June, is inspired from international adoption stories. Another psychology book, this time, is set for publication in September. The book I am writing now is about an ordinary man living in Ethiopia. How is it to live your life in such a country, out of our western world’s comfort zone? I have  written one more book for adults to be published, a mystery story that started as an exercise in a creative writing lab with two other students and it was interesting enough for a company to present it to the readers!

TNH: How long does the writing process take from idea to publication?

SR: For me, as a writer, the idea of writing for something might sit in my mind for some months. I read  thoroughly and learn about my subject. When I feel ready to write, it’s a matter of hours – for short texts, and a matter of months for finishing my books. Now, for a writer to find the proper publishing company for him/her and his/her creation is something very personal. For me, up till now, it has taken one or two months to find it, for each of my books. From the time of the contract to the publication, it usually takes six months.

Ego tha Ziso by Stephania Roulaki is available online: https://bit.ly/37yn5Xi.

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